iTunes / NBC Rift

Apparently, NBC is pulling their shows off of iTunes so iTunes won’t be showing new shows from NBC.

Apple declined to pay more than double the wholesale price for each NBC TV episode, which would have resulted in the retail price to consumers increasing to $4.99 per episode from the current $1.99. Apple’s agreement with NBC ends in December. Since NBC would withdraw their shows in the middle of the television season, Apple has decided to not offer NBC TV shows for the upcoming television season beginning in September. NBC supplied iTunes with three of its 10 best selling TV shows last season, accounting for 30 percent of iTunes TV show sales.


This seems like a very weird move on NBC’s part.

$4.99? For a TV show you can watch free? When other shows from rival netoworks are $1.99? When your network is in last place? When the tecnology easily exists to record and transfer the show yourself? When people can easily swap episodes for free – and they won’t even feel guilty since the show was free – copyright law be damned.

I want NBC to make more money and be successful. This doesn’t seem like a good way to do it.

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Dear Senator Craig: Restroom Etiquette

Slate has more than everything you need to know about downlow men’s room hookups. And Senator Craig seems to already know all about this.

Is tapping your foot really code for public sex?

Yes. The signal has been around for decades in the United States and Europe. Generally, one person initiates contact by tapping his foot in a way that’s visible beneath the stall divider. If the second person responds with a similar tap, the initiator moves his foot closer to the other person’s stall. If the other person makes a similar move, the first will inch closer yet again. The pair usually goes through the whole process a few times, just to confirm that the signals aren’t an accident.

Next, one of the men will slide his hand under the divider. This usually means he’s inviting the other person to present himself, as if to say, “Show me what you got.” The partner can respond by kneeling on the floor and presenting his penis or rear end underneath the divider. Or he can swipe his own hand under the divider, as if to say, “You go first.” Some married men make a point of displaying their wedding band (like Sen. Craig allegedly did) to make themselves more alluring.

A roundup of questions about U.S. senators and sex in public bathrooms. – By Christopher Beam – Slate Magazine

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It seems that the extremely anonymous nature of the acts described make them perfect for closeted Republicans.

Rolling Stone’s Great Iraq Swindle

I’ve been hearing good things about the article in the current Rolling Stone magazine about Iraq. I just read it and it’s humdinger. Maybe it will get some mainstream media exposure and maybe people will start to actually care about this in a big way. Yes, you’ve been cheated.

Operation Iraqi Freedom, it turns out, was never a war against Saddam ­Hussein’s Iraq. It was an invasion of the federal budget, and no occupying force in history has ever been this efficient. George W. Bush’s war in the Mesopotamian desert was an experiment of sorts, a crude first take at his vision of a fully privatized American government. In Iraq the lines between essential government services and for-profit enterprises have been blurred to the point of absurdity — to the point where wounded soldiers have to pay retail prices for fresh underwear, where modern-day chattel are imported from the Third World at slave wages to peel the potatoes we once assigned to grunts in KP, where private companies are guaranteed huge profits no matter how badly they fuck things up.

And just maybe, reviewing this appalling history of invoicing orgies and million-dollar boondoggles, it’s not so far-fetched to think that this is the way someone up there would like things run all over — not just in Iraq but in Iowa, too, with the state police working for Corrections Corporation of America, and DHL with the contract to deliver every Christmas card. And why not? What the Bush administration has created in Iraq is a sort of paradise of perverted capitalism, where revenues are forcibly extracted from the customer by the state, and obscene profits are handed out not by the market but by an unaccountable government bureauc­racy. This is the triumphant culmination of two centuries of flawed white-people thinking, a preposterous mix of authoritarian socialism and laissez-faire profit­eering, with all the worst aspects of both ideologies rolled up into one pointless, supremely idiotic military adventure — American men and women dying by the thousands, so that Karl Marx and Adam Smith can blow each other in a Middle Eastern glory hole.

The Great Iraq Swindle: : Rolling Stone

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Wheelchair Bound Man With Medical Marijuana Card Raided By Feds

Agents with a regional drug task force raided Leonard French’s home in southeastern New Mexico and seized several marijuana plants, sparking the latest debate over the state’s new medical marijuana law.

Wheelchair-bound and suffering from chronic pain and muscle spasms, French says he’s certified by the state Health Department to possess and smoke marijuana. The 44-year-old lost the use of his legs following a motorcycle crash about 20 years ago.

On Tuesday, French allowed the agents into his home in Malaga — just north of the New Mexico-Texas border — because he said he believed he was doing nothing wrong. He had worked with his doctor and the state to get permission to have marijuana.

“I’m kind of stuck between a rock and a hard place,” he told Albuquerque television station KOB-TV on Tuesday. “It makes me feel like the state says, ‘Here you go. Here’s your license to drive,’ and the first time I left the driveway, they took my car away.”

Las Cruces Sun-News – Drug bust sparks questions about N.M. medical marijuana law (6:42 a.m.)

And to his credit, Gov. Bill Richardson said something about it…

The governor, who is running for president, pledged to fight for the medical-marijuana program he helped get through the New Mexico Legislature, saying it’s a matter of state sovereignty. “We’re preparing legal options,” he said, though he didn’t specify what those options are.

All eight Democratic presidential candidates have pledged to stop federal raids on medical marijuana patients in the 12 states with laws allowing the use of marijuana to treat medical conditions.

Earlier this month Richardson sent Bush an open letter urging the administration to change its “misguided policy and wasted resources spent to intimidate states trying to implement medical marijuana programs.”

The Bill Richardson File –

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The Thirty-Six Hour Pen Trick

Timothy Ferriss wrote the 4-Hour workweek, which I’m going to get as an audio book soon. So, apparently just to prove that he has a lot of free time he made a video showing pen tricks. That’s tricks. With a pen. But they are actually cool, really, and Ferriss implies that it’s a trend in Asia, too. He explains them well, as well. Next, someone teach him how to do lighting for video.

The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich